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Sedalia man convicted in fatal arson seeks lesser sentence

SEDALIA, Mo. -A Sedalia man convicted of second-degree murder this summer is seeking a lesser sentence for the crime.

Twenty-three-year-old Aran Cantrell pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and first-degree arson in the June 2016 death of 30-year-old Matthew Eldenburg. He was sentenced to 24 years in prison.

The Sedalia Democrat reports Cantrell has filed a motion arguing that the second-degree murder charge be dropped to involuntary manslaughter because evidence didn’t show he was guilty of the more serious crime. He also says he had ineffective counsel during his trial.

Eldenburg died in a fire at his Sedalia home. An autopsy revealed he was alive when the fire started.

Charges against a second person were dismissed because of insufficient evidence.